The CO2RE Carbon Dioxide (C02) Fractional Laser Resurfacing removes layers of skin tissue in a fractionated method (columns of skin are removed, leaving the skin surrounding each column intact to aid in healing) to help reduce “age-spots” (also called sun freckles, liver spots, and lentigines), fine lines, wrinkles, scarring, uneven coloration, skin laxity, textural irregularities, dull tone, and a thinned collagen layer of the face, neck, and chest.
CO2RE is the best treatment if you wish to get the most results with one treatment. If you have the ability to take some time to heal (7-14 days), having this one treatment is like having multiple other non-invasive treatments at once. It is also the best single treatment for advanced skin damage and wrinkling.
CO2RE is an in-office procedure that requires pre and post-treatment medications to ensure proper healing and comfort during the procedure. Discomfort varies on the depth of the treatment. For your comfort during the treatment, we may apply a topical anesthetic or inject local anesthetic and/or tumescent anesthetic and prescribe sedative medications to reduce discomfort. After the treatment most patients describe the post-procedure feeling as a bad sunburn for about 12 hours to 2 days. Please also follow the instructions for all other prescribed pain medication is needed post treatment. We also recommend pain or relaxation medications prior to treatment therefore you will need to have somebody drive you home after treatment.
Typically one laser treatment with C02RE is recommended. Occasionally, in an area that cannot be treated aggressively, we may need to do more than one treatment to optimize results. Maintenance treatments may also be necessary to maintain results, especially if sun is not avoided or proper skin care used. Occasionally, even with the best care, another treatment may be necessary in a few years (in the area around the eyes, it may only be 1-2 years).
How do I know if I need CO2RE?
Anyone who has sun damaged, aging skin, irregularly pigmented skin, wrinkles, sagging, irregular texture of the skin or other skin condition that could be expected to be improved with this treatment that understands the risks, costs and time necessary to achieve the full benefit of the procedure and who has realistic expectations of the ultimate outcome.
This is not a good treatment for skin of color. The reason is that this is an aggressive treatment that does result in prolonged healing of the surface. Pigmented skin tends to heal with hyperpigmentation and that does occur with this procedure upwards of 30% of the time. It can take many months of topical treatments and sometimes additional laser treatments to correct this. If this treatment is to be undertaken on dark skin, it will need to be part of a series of gentler treatments and not a single treatment.
This is also not a treatment for any woman who is pregnant or anyone who has been treated with isotretinoin (or Accutane) within 6 months. In addition, if there are any conditions resulting in delayed or abnormal healing or a history of cold sores or herpes virus it is important to tell your physician at the pre-treatment stage to prevent complications.